Chili peppers do a lot of things – a lot more than you may think.
You probably already know that the capsaicin in chili peppers can alleviate severe headaches. It also clears your sinuses and can stave off the harmful bacteria that lead to stomach ulcers. Laboratory tests have also shown that capsaicin may have the power to kill off cancerous cells.
Capsaicin works in multiple ways to reduce obesity, such as jump-starting metabolism, thermogenically burning food before it’s stored as fat, and triggering feelings of satiety. There’s also evidence to suggest that this miracle worker counteracts the development of diabetes.
Basically, capsaicin does a lot of cool things for your body.
It also makes you smarter.
Okay, we’re partially serious. The capsaicin that lines the walls of chili peppers has been shown to increase cognitive functioning after the age of 40.
In case you’re wondering, cognitive functions are “cerebral activities that lead to knowledge, including all means and mechanisms of acquiring information.” They are what make you smart. If you can improve your cognitive functioning, you can become smarter.
How Does Capsaicin Make You Smarter?
There are many medical uses for capsaicin and it’s a popular ingredient in labs across the world. It’s one of those naturally occurring ingredients that researchers just can’t seem to get enough of. It’s constantly being injected into cells of one sort or another.
In China, a study looked at the cognitive effects of the activation of the TRPV-1 receptor (which is how your body senses the painful heat of chili peppers and hot sauces). Interestingly, it appears as though capsaicin mitigates neuropathological alterations and cognitive impairment.
A lot more research needs to be done, of course, as there are many reasons and causes for impairment of cognitive functions – and a few different ways to enhance your abilities in this regard.
Studies regarding cognitive functions and capsaicin have looked at the issues from many different angles, including some that affect other parts of the body.
An interesting note from one such study is that capsaicin may also inhibit liver dysfunction. Not only does it make you smarter, but it may also help combat the effects of a poor diet or alcohol indulgence. That said, you probably shouldn’t expect chili peppers to radically prevent diseases from affecting your body; nor will it prepare you for crazy difficult tests.
But, since chili peppers aren’t going to harm you either, you may as well add some to every meal. Who doesn’t want to be smarter (without additional effort)?